|NATIONAL PARKS QUICKLINKS|
Backpacker Magazine – November 2012
Claim an eagle's roost above Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest.
Maintained today by volunteers organized by Friends of Hidden Lake Lookout (they’re on Facebook), the roughly 10-by-15-foot structure is free and first-come, first-serve for overnight stays, with no amenities beyond a table, a platform with mats for two people, two more mats that fit on the floor, and a small library. There’s no porch, but lots of windows, and virtually always snowmelt nearby for water. On a clear night, lay out your bags on the big, flat rock just outside the lookout. The 4.5-mile Hidden Lake Trail begins in lush temperate rainforest, ascends through meadows of lupine, hellebores, and blueberries, and traverses slopes of heather before reaching its rocky terminus at the lookout. Pack an ice axe; you’ll cross a steep snow gully three miles up the trail.
Season Mid-August to mid-September is best, after summer’s mosquitoes have tapered off.
Get there The Hidden Lake Trail begins at the end of Sibley Creek Road 1540 (off Cascade River Road, east of Marblemount).
Cost/info There’s no fee or reservations, but go prepared to camp outside if it’s full (weekends are busier, naturally); (206) 470-4060; fs.usda.gov/mbs